Sample Essays on Osama Bin Laden

Osama Bin Laden

Osama Bin Laden was the forbearer of al-Qaeda, an Islamist militant organization responsible for several casualty mass attacks antagonistic towards both the military and civilian targets. The prominent targets were however strategized against the United States. He was the protagonist of the Arab Spring. This paper summarizes his strategized terrorism plans in relation to psychological models of radicalization.

One of Osama’s strategic plan letters was to plea with the jihadist groups to terminate domestic attacks against Muslim civilians, but concentrate on the United States since that was their main goal (Lahoud et al. 2012, 38-39). He therefore made a public statement based on Muslim opponents such as unscrupulous Muslim rulers and their counterparts Western overseers. Secondly, since he lacked public media campaigns to support his politics, he strategized to affiliate with a terror group that did not work in his favor and ended up killing thousands of Muslims. After the failure of this plan, he then strategized to threaten United States that he would take public measures with clear and practical steps in a bid to dissociate himself from the vile errors that violate Islamic laws. He also planned on expansion of al-Qaeda from the Arabian Peninsula by warning them not to declare an Islamic state in Yemen (Lahoud et al. 2012, 39). Later on, he strategized to take the loyalty pledge of al-Qaeda to Somali rebel movements to prevent foreign aid and investment in Somalia. The prominent strategic letter however was that of the dawn of the new political landscape, which he considered the formidable event. The political landscape emerged in North Africa and the Middle East, to foster its guidance and efforts on media outreach.

Osama’s relationship with the regional jihad groups at the time of his death was filled with frustrations, anguish and contest because they were being exploited by the enemy, further distorting the jihadis’ image in the eyes of the general public (Lahoud et al. 2012, 18). His was frustrated with the jihad groups, which caused sufferings to Muslims and urged them to outdo these attacks but rather focus on the U.S. In addition, his inability to control their actions and public statements was very compelling, advising them in pain to stop Muslim civilian casualties. He was not amused by the emerging trend of American populist jihad and its English magazines meant to appeal American Muslims launch attacks random attacks in the US because of its possible dangerous consequences (Lahoud et al. 2012, 57).  His relation with the affiliates was a contest between three different positions and the senior leaders.

The radicalization process can be explained using five models that illustrate discrepancies and commonalities, as there has been a shift in the conception of a terrorist group (King et al. 2011, 604). Three essential elements of the radicalization process are evident in each model, and they include the struggles over identity, phenomenon of relative deprivation, and the presence of personality characteristics (King et al. 2011, 609-612). This is directly in line with the jihadists who possess different personal characteristics and Osama, the al-Qaida organization founder who was an active and radical extremist. In discrepancies, the focus is mainly on the portrayals and different formats of the radicalization process. Emphasis has been placed on the radicalization of “homegrown” jihadists to understand why immigrants born in Western countries can “become radicalized and plan terrorism against their homeland”, taking into consideration that most Western countries are currently facing multicultural challenges (King et al. 2011, 604).

The basing of counter-radicalization strategies on models that have not been empirically validated can be misleading and risky because ideology on its own can ensure continued individual radicalization and sustenance of extremist violent Islamic community, even though the jihadist organization or the adherents may be directly disadvantaged (King et al. 2011, 616).

While it is evident that Osama was a Protagonist in the Arab Spring and other terrorist activities, the involvement in such activities is influenced by psychological transformations occurring within individuals, increasing their susceptibility to legitimate terrorism. The transformations are referred to as radicalization. Each of the five prominent models of homegrown jihad radicalization has contributed essential theories in the field of terrorism research. However, future research on the radicalization of homegrown jihadist should focus on the single narrative and the Internet (King et al. 2011, 618). While the internet has featured in most homegrown jihadi terrorist plot since 2002, the jihadi narrative has a considerable influence on those involved in terrorist plots against the West (King et al. 2011, 618). Apart from these, the discussion forums can also be applied as a pathway to homegrown jihads.


Works cited

King, Michael, and Donald Taylor. “The Radicalization of Homegrown Jihadists: A Review of Theoretical Models and Social Psychological Evidence.” Terrorism and Political Violence, 23 (2011): 602-622. Print.

Lahoud, Nelly, et al. “The Letters from Abbottabad.” Combating Terrorism Center at West Point. 3 May, 2012. Web. 25 Feb. 2014.